War Hawks Getting Confused About Syria

John Glaser, July 27, 2012

Spinning plates can get confusing. For months, the war hawks in Washington have been vigorously calling for an intervention in Syria. Depending on the direction the wind was blowing that day, they might have been arguing for intervention to stop the bloodshed, or they might have been saying war was necessary to eliminate Assad and isolate Iran. You might have heard them pushing for a no-fly zone, and when they heard from the experts that this would dramatically worsen the situation, they might have retreated to simply arming the rebels. When they heard the rebels committed serious crimes and have ties to al-Qaeda and other extremists, they vacillated between calling them freedom fighters and arguing still for arming the opposition – just to do it carefully.

Now, the pro-war crowd is folding in on themselves again. Now we’re supposed to open up a second war in Syria to fight al-Qaeda. Seth Jones in the Wall Street Journal:

The United States and its allies should consider opening a second front in the Syrian war. In addition to helping end Bashar Assad’s rule, there is a growing need to conduct a covert campaign against al Qaeda and other extremist groups gaining a presence in the country.

…Al Qaeda’s presence appears to be growing in several cities, especially Aleppo, Damascus, Deraa and Idlib, where the group has established cells. Its leadership structure is headed by Abu Muhammad al-Julani, a veteran jihadist.

…The danger is clear. Assuming Assad’s regime eventually collapses, a robust al Qaeda presence will undermine transition efforts and pose a major threat to regional stability.

Well then genius, it might have been good not to have initiated regime change, no? US support for the rebel militias has emboldened the opposition, deepened the conflict, and allowed extremist insurgents to destabilize the Assad regime. Jones admits that one thing explaining al-Qaeda’s rise in Syria is “the draw of a new jihad—smack in the middle of the Arab world.” Like in Iraq, the US has helped create an al-Qaeda presence in Syria, which is now justifying even more military intervention.

Jones’s position is pitifully confused. Which policy is the US supposed to pursue in Syria – supporting the rebels in a proxy war against Assad, or fighting the rebels and eliminating the main threat to Assad’s regime? This isn’t quantum mechanics; we can’t exist in two different realities at once. Or are we just supposed to take any excuse to intervene at face value?

Jones is also contradictory: He admits al-Qaeda fighters are swarming to Syria because of the draw of jihad. Yet, he wants to “launch a covert campaign to ramp up intelligence-collection efforts against al Qaeda, capture or kill its senior leaders, and undermine its legitimacy.” Right, because nothing snuffs out al-Qaeda like an unprovoked US war in the Middle East.




28 Responses to “War Hawks Getting Confused About Syria”

  1. Wll put, John. The blatant hypocrisy of those who wish to "Cast out Satan in the name of Satan" never tires.

  2. What we are seeing in Syria is also a preview of the demise of the Iranian regime.
    The regime sees it too — though it prefers to avert its eyes.
    Nonetheless, the writing is on the wall.
    And it was put there with the blood of those Iranians killed while peacefully protesting Ahmadinejad’s election.
    The shedding of their innocent blood started the Arab spring, and the shedding of much more innocent Iranian blood will end it.
    The regime sealed this fate with its brutality back in 2009.

  3. You guys at Anti-war are on a roll…best stuff I've read.

  4. Hypocrisy or the unravelling of the lies?

    Al Qaeda is a tool of the CIA/Mossad. Some reading: "War is a Racket: Smedly Butler" "confessions of an economic hit man: Perkins" "Creatures from Jekyll Island G Edward Griffin (He's still around and take a look at some of his you tube videos)" and Carrol Quigley's book(s) (Carrol was Bill Clinton's university lecturer/mentor.

    Then ask the question; is what is described still going on today, have these people stopped?

  5. I agree with Tim. The situation in Syria presents a clear opportunity, tragically so, to explain the complexity of meddling in the internal affairs of foreign countries and the mixed up justifications given. You guys are tearing it up – keep at it!

  6. Ok, we're waaaaayyy past the point of "starting to resemble" '1984'.
    Now reality is proceeding at a rapid pace that makes Orwell's writing seem unimaginative, safe and inoffensive.

    Reality is more absurd than any fantasy humans could ever think up.

  7. "a growing need to" lol. Definition: A gaggle of salesmen who push what follows "to."

    I don't think Orwell pretended he was capturing it –we might project that on him because he invented two whole worlds for illustration.

  8. Great stuff…. guise… Keep it up……… Me……….. ???????? well…………. It is wonderful how little Mr. Assads tribulations trouble me..

    Yes, yes I know…. that it's his support for fair treatment of Iran and the Palestinians which is his great undoing……. True…!! He is however…. an absolute autocrat and dictator…. But his authority is NOT what lost my sympathy… No……. It was the torture company of his government …..and particularly the torture of Maher Arar, the Canadian engineer who was imprisoned and tortured by Syria after he was rendered there by Bush Neocons who mistakenly insisted he was an Al Qaeda operative………..

    Am I troubled that if Assad goes down and he is replaced with NATO's Al Queita flavor of the month?? YES…. !!! Am, I worried it will be a disaster for the wonderful Lebanese people and poor beset Iran……whom the ZioNazis in Israel lust to nuke…??? YES…. !!! YES…. !!! You bet I'm worried for them…… BIG..TIME……!!!!! Am I naive…??? Perhaps….. But on this one I am taking the….. "Give Them, Enough Rope and They will Hang Themselves….. line of reasoning…….. And they seem to be clutching at straws as their entire Middle Eastern edifice of obeisance crumbles… after Wikileaks blew the columns ………… so the collapse would be just as smooth as building seven's…..

    What will come next if Assad capitulates…..????? I don't have the answer……. But I believe that a certain tipping point is in the offing……. as those that think they can rule the world are beginning to look desperate……. and make mistakes…. Maybe everything will turn out just as Henry told Hillary it will…. Using the CIAs Al Quaeta lackeys OPENLY in Libya and Syria is bold…!!! Bit is it wise…??? "One last war for US" [before you go bankrupt"] they cry…….. Neo dreams or neo nightmares… ??? Or just one more Neo Con……??? Time will tell……. and.. PFSST…… Careful they don't wake that dragon…. You know… the one that always blames those who by deception made OUR god of light perish….. but by proxy…. When the money goes……. the people "will be lookin for scalps" as GWB put so eloquently……. Watch Out…!!! Watch In…!!!! Watch…!!!!

  9. I didn't know we had a "first" front in Syria. Where are the American troops? Psychopathy is the order of the day in US foreign policy.

  10. July 25th, 2012, clearing suburbs of Damascus. Russian journalist Anna Draft
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oC5dF0pEO30&fe

  11. With Syria neutralized Israel will invade Lebanon and annex its water supplies. Al Qaeda is Saudi and the Saudi's work for the US and the US for Mossad. Syria was trying to suck up to the US when it became a CIA torture center but the fact that it's on trouble shows it wasn't the evil dictatorship neo Nazis claim it to be.

  12. Special Ops operating from Israel or possibly Turkey would be my guess. CIA of course. They are the private branch of the military these days.

  13. This is priceless !!!

    The War Party and Interventionist s now want 2 wars in Syria, one to ovethrow the Syrian government using the "Good" Jihadists who work for us, and one to get rid of the "Bad" jihadists, who are Al Quada and are arriving from somewhere.

    We can't say they are comg from our Glorious Ally, Saudi, who we relied on to organised the "Good" Jihadists etc. etc.

  14. What if Syria does not fall. It would appear things are not going well for the paid military which invadedwith USA/Miliary arms. Why do you think they are burning there dead instead of having the fact that they are not from Syria discoveryed. It takens men and equipment to over throw a government. When USA/Israel could not get no fly passed and then attack from Jets. The british had over 2000 jet attacks on Libia and even then they had trouble kill Libya military. Without air support the paid military will lose one dead paid soldier ata time. There are no way to replace the paid military killed or wounded. No supplies mean defeat in just a matter of time. Israel invasion would be ever costly and you might have notice Israel has had a terribe cost just controlling the old ladies of Gaza

  15. special ops only work in the short run. If the military knows you coming from a limited number of places they will kill a few with each raid. We cannot have a large lose in forces already at war for ten tears. We cannot already treat already wounded soldiers. Iseael is a small nation with a much smaller population then they like to admit. In the 1990 Israel imported a million new citizens from russia and poland. Israel does not to admit most of the million used the program to move someplace ese. The official Israel reports has over 500,000 dual citizens who have not been in Israel for over a year. How many dual citizens are actually of than personal profit interested in Israel? A long costly war with Iran would probable see a vast giving up Israel passprts instead of going to the war.

  16. Maybe we should invade Jordan? You know, kind of a pre-emptive invasion? Get there before Al-Qaeda does? Since we've already "lost" Syria?

  17. I suppose invading Israel and shutting down the whole dog and pony show is out of the question. Ok, ok, just a thought.

  18. Wrong brother. The "peaceful protestors" in Iran were US sponsored opposition who tried to
    disrupt and change the results of an observed election. They had the MSM behind them but the Iranian people were'nt fooled. I recommend Tony Cartalucci's articles for the most informative
    voice on the Syrian situation. Cheers. B.

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